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Creativity and Meditation

The term 'meditation' (from the Latin meditatio, or thinking over) refers to a variety of practices that are used to self-regulate one's attention. All meditative practices attempt to bring the meditator into the 'here and now,' breaking through habitual patterns of behaving and experiencing. The case for increased creativity during meditation rests on a practice's ability to assist the meditator to break through socially ingrained patterns of perceiving and conceptualizing the world. If the linear, cause-and-effect way of thinking can be transcended, creativity may result. Creativity may be further enhanced by adopting a more circular way of thinking in which the focus is on relationships, possibilities, and recursive patterns rather than on linear causality and single-outcome events. The research on meditation and creativity has produced mixed results. One group of researchers found no relationship between creativity test scores and experience in meditation. Another group reported...

What Is Meditating Like

Tibetan masters teach that when water in a glass is agitated, it is not clear. As the water settles, it becomes clear. Meditation allows the mind to settle, see clearly, and pleasantly dance or play with whatever arises. Meditation only requires a quiet place to practice, a comfortably alert posture, a point on which to focus concentration (be it the breath, a calming word, or a prayer), and a passive attitude that pleasantly accepts whatever happens. Although there are many ways to meditate, the techniques are not the same as the experience. That is, the various methods can all help us to feel a peaceful, settled clarity and a greater sense of security.

Theres Meditation and Then Theres Transcendental Meditation

During meditation's 1960s rise in popularity in the West, a version called transcendental meditation (TM) was founded by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, a physics scholar from lndia. TM is based on ancient Indian practices, is it similar to other forms of meditation such as Zen, yoga, progressive relaxation, and other means of eliciting deep relaxation. Meditation is a vital component of transcendental meditation activity. But its promotional materials claim that TM teaches mastery of the forces of nature, enabling students to become invisible, walk through walls, fly unassisted, and develop the strength of an elephant. Devotees claim that TM is the vehicle for enlightenment and even world peace. Accepting these beliefs is not prerequisite to benefiting from the practice of TM. TM's physiologic benefits, which are shared by other types of meditation and not unique to this particular approach, are well documented. But flying through the air Becoming invisible Doesn't make sense to most of us....

Meditation Instructions

Spread your feet to approximately shoulder width. As you breathe in, imagine the sun Since meditation is an experience, more than a method, use various stimuli to remind you to release and relax into your true happy nature a beautiful scene in nature, a smile, a greeting, a joke, a good book, driving, a picture, walking, or a phone call from a friend.

Inner Strength and Self Soothing Meditation

This very soothing, brief meditation was developed by McNeal and Frederick 1 You might enhance the effectiveness of this meditation by ending with two deep, cleansing breaths. At first, take a deep, quiet abdominal breath, filling an imaginary balloon under the navel with air. When the balloon is full, let the wave of the in-breath gradually fill your lower lungs, and then the middle and upper lungs. Keep your shoulders relaxed and still throughout. As you prepare to exhale, notice your heartbeat. As you exhale, let the out-breath carry all tension and strain from your heart as your heartbeat becomes calm, quiet, and steady. Take another deep cleansing breath. First fill the balloon, then let the wave of inhalation gradually fill the lungs. As you prepare to exhale, think of your mind and brain. As you exhale, let your mind become very calm and clear as you release all needless concerns. Constructive Power Meditation Here we shall meditate on our true, constructively powerful nature,...

The Age of Enlightenment and a Flourishing Humanism

The publication of Duff's work was one of several events that set the stage for scientific research on human thought, which would later prove essential to the demystification of the creative act. Here is a brief list of major Enlightenment milestones that helped break the path

Creativity Meditation and Hypnosis

There are psychophysiological markers for hypnagogia, hypno-pompia, and napping. In the case of meditation, a number of studies have identified markers such as reduced respiration rate and volume of air breathed, reduced oxygen consumption and carbon dioxide elimination, and reduced blood lactate. In these studies, heart rate and the skin's electrical conductance decreased, but the frequency of alpha (and sometimes that of theta) brain waves increased. All of this suggests reduced energy metabolism, autonomic nervous system arousal, cortical energy metabolism, autonomic nervous system arousal, and cortical arousal. Additional research indicated that reduced arousal during meditation is due to its rest and relaxation aspects rather than to the specific meditation practice employed. However, it is probably more accurate to speak of meditative states of consciousness than to hypothesize a single meditative state, because different practices may emphasize rapid breathing and active...

Biofeedback or Meditation

The ability to gain control over what had been considered to be involuntary or autonomic physiologic functions was documented in biofeedback studies in the I970s. However, since ancient times practitioners of yoga and Zen Buddhism have achieved similar control using meditation without the benefit of modern monitoring equipment. Meditation (Chapter 17) involves resting quietly and performing mental exercises to achieve a state of profound relaxation and focused concentration. Electroencephalogram (EEG) studies of yoga and meditation showed practitioners' ability to produce changes in brain-wave activity. Research shows that, with meditation and concentration alone, people can lower their blood pressure, heartbeat and respiration, reduce oxygen consumption and blood lactate levels, and change other internal activities.

What Is Meditation

Meditation is awareness of one's true, happy nature. My first teacher taught that one need not fight fear one need only be aware of love. One need not flee pain one need only penetrate it with peaceful awareness, without fear or avoidance. When we create a safe environment we often discover inner strengths that have previously been untapped in the flurry of busy modern living. Sometimes we become aware of hurts that need to be healed with kindness. Sometimes we discover insights. For example, the Buddhists describe a gopher that is being chased by a lion that is interested in a meal. The gopher jumps off a cliff. While falling, the gopher notices a bear below, its mouth wide open, so it grabs a root on the side of the cliff. Dangling there, between the lion and the bear, the gopher notices a flower. It reaches over, takes a bite, and says, How delicious The lesson, of course, is that even amidst moments of chaos there exist potential moments of joy, if one has eyes to see. We can find...


Meditation is among the most accepted complementary therapies in mainstream medicine. Its origins lie in the work of Shamans, or early priests, who meditated while seeking guidance from the spiritual realm. Every major religion in the world has regarded and utilized meditation as a link to spiritual enlightenment. Hypnosis, especially self-hypnosis, may be seen as a deeper form of meditation. Both have ancient origins in magic and religion. Meditation gained serious attention in Western cultures in the 1960s. As word spread of Eastern masters able to perform remarkable feats of bodily control and achieve altered states of consciousness, people in Western countries became increasingly fascinated by meditation. Health practitioners and researchers became interested in understanding how the mind could produce physiologic changes in the body. Meditation's purported ability to achieve physical benefits was a natural springboard for the curiosity and research activity that continues to this...

The Enlightenment

The eighteenth-century period of the Enlightenment has been characterized as the Age of Reason, when the powers of mind reached out to command both nature and human affairs. The goal was the perfectibility of man and of man's lot on earth, and the means to this end was rationality tempered by direct observation. Within this context, all that held back or confounded the development of civilization - whether particular individuals or society as a whole - came under heightened scrutiny, a problem to be solved by the reasoned application of science and medicine. Madness, or, as some might put it, unreason, stood out as a dark challenge to the light of progress. Indeed, this was the era in which physicians discovered that the insane presented a significant and distinct institutional population, one amenable to medical intervention that society was wracked by distressing conditions composed of psychic as well as physical ailments and that the source of most diseases was traceable to the...

Cross Cultural Comparisons

Eastern and Western meditative practices have a long history they have been viewed as spiritual exercises - means for attaining the special kind of awareness that can be arrived at in concert with other life practices. In contemporary industrialized societies, however, meditation tends to be oriented toward practical goals, with no ties to a specific belief system. The advantage is that one is free to use meditation outside a spiritual context, combining it with other methods of self-development and health-oriented or psychotherapeutic treatment. The disadvantage is that one may not attain the peace of mind of the unitive 'bliss' claimed by members of traditional schools of meditation.

The Development of Clinical Psychiatry

10Under the code, for example, any theft valued at 30 shillings or more was a hanging offense (Eigen 2004). In the spirit of reform typical of the Age of Enlightenment, sentencing policy in the 1830s changed significantly. The Bloody Code was repealed, most property offenses were no longer deemed capital crimes, and capital punishment for most felonies was restricted.

Neurophysiology Mechanisms

That are decoupled, totally or partially, from sensory input during many alterations in consciousness. A total decoupling takes place during dreaming, while partial decouplings take place in hypnagogic or hypnopompic states, daydreaming, meditation, and some drug-induced or hypnosis-induced conditions. Transitions from such states represent a fertile ground for the development of creative ideas, because the perceptual mechanisms automatically linked to organizing the sensory inputs would still occur, occasionally constructing novel and useful images from fragments of internal neural noise and loosely guided consultations with memory. Language allows the abstract images and relationships to be translated into a communicable form. There is a direct relationship between perceptual processes and creative thought. The decoupling of normal sensory input during alternative states of consciousness should be viewed as distinct from restricting sensory input in an individual's normal waking...

Learning from the past

Several questions regarding the research on hypnosis and creativity remain unanswered because of the absence of robust findings due to methodological differences in the studies, the varied hypnotic responsiveness of the subjects, and the fact that creativity has been measured in disparate ways. Even when similar tests are used, they are administered differently, and the tests themselves admittedly assess a single instance or aspect of creativity. It may be that restrictions in awareness increase the priming of associative networks (outside of one's awareness) by reducing cognitive interference. As a result, new associations are made, giving rise to creative insights. Imagination or fantasy provides a continuous backdrop to mentation outside of awareness, and hypnosis may increase its accessibility. Heart rate probably reflects shifts of attention from external to internal events, making it a potentially revealing way to assess the oscillation of attention from an external focus of...

Planning for the future

In this regard, what Richards has dubbed 'everyday creativity' is an overlooked phenomenon in a field which all too often emphasizes the exotic, the dramatic, and the spectacular. It is quite likely that creative work draws more upon the ordinary waking state with its intact subsystems of consciousness than upon altered and transitional states. Drugs can be ingested, meditation can be practiced, hypnosis can be utilized, and the contents of reverie can be recorded, but everyday behaviors and experiences can also provide inspiration for what later may become a novel approach to a long-delayed home repair, an improved golf stroke, a new recipe for a family dinner, a breakthrough in a troubled relationship, an ingenious logistical plan to divert restaurant leftovers to homeless people, a challenging educational technology, or any one of many other achievements. The need for creative approaches at all social levels has never been greater their development and application need to reflect...

Psychiatrists Moral Insanity and Medical Jurisprudence

The spirit of Enlightenment reform included a commitment on the part of physicians to help improve society. The medical community regarded itself as an integral part of the program of human and social improvement. Many physicians believed that training in medical jurisprudence would enhance the public contribution of physicians toward the betterment of society by helping them achieve a working relationship with lawyers, judges, and legislators. Most medical jurisprudents believed they could help society deal with the troubling and difficult problems posed by mental illness, and many felt it was their social duty to do so (Mohr 1993 Robinson 1996).

The Asylum Physicians Psychiatrys First Expert Witnesses

The increasing use of psychiatric witnesses seems to have been more court-inspired than professionally generated (Eigen 1991). Scientific advances, social and political reforms, and the Enlightenment's optimism regarding the social reform resulted in the increased reliance of courts and legislatures on medical witnesses and scientific authorities (Robinson 1996). Problems seldom arose in cases where defendants were obviously irrational, demented, or hallucinatory. In contrast, courts found highly problematic those cases where defendants claimed moral or partial insanity. The identification of these forms of insanity and their implications for legal responsibility required the testimony of physicians with specialized knowledge. More and more, especially in high-profile trials, asylum superintendents, authors, and lecturers in insanity acted as expert medical witnesses (Eigen 1991).

What It Can Do for

These ceremonies may be combined with rituals and symbols from other sources. Some create a kiva, a round Pueblo ceremonial hut outdoors, in a special room, or in the basement of their homes. For a recent multicultural celebration of the spring equinox solstice, some friends of the author sat in their kiva, one facing west and the other east, on either side of a large, centrally placed quartz stone. They decided to bring rainbow light from deep within the womb of Mother Earth through the vortex of the quartz. Meditating, they soon saw ribbons of light and energy flooding the room. They shared their interpretations of this effect and concluded the three-hour ceremony shortly before midnight, feeling a deep and comforting sense of peace and connection with the universe.

Organization of Services

And developmental disorders such as autism. Nonetheless, behavioral issues and psychosomatic illnesses are quite common presentations in the urban areas and are well documented in the Indian literature. Psychosomatic presentations commonly encountered in children and adolescents include psue-doseizures, headaches, stomachaches, difficulty in breathing, and limb pain. Alternative traditional modes of treatment, such as yoga, meditation, homeopathy, and Ayurveda (an ancient form of medical practice, primarily using herbs and extracts of various medicinal plants), are often pursued.

Loss and Grief in Life

The bereavement experience includes the concept of grief, as pain and suffering must be experienced in order to heal and resolve the loss event. It also includes ideas of reaction, adaptation, and process. Reaction involves a response. The bereaved person reacts emotionally as the pain of grief is experienced, and gradually reacts cognitively and behaviourally as a new identity is formed and a life is rebuilt. Adaptation refers to the concept of letting go of that which has been lost, compromising, and gradually adjusting to and accepting a new life. And process involves the total experience. The work of bereavement is not linear it is cyclical in nature, with many painful returns to the beginning to start the process once more. Tailspins back to an earlier stage of grief are an inherent aspect of the bereavement experience.

Psychotic Syndromes

In patients with chronic mild or moderately severe anxiety, benzodiazepines, used sparingly for a few weeks to several months, can be helpful. When chronic treatment is necessary, buspirone, tricyclic antidepressants, and MAO inhibitors may be utilized in selected patients, particularly those with concomitant depression. Beta-blockers may also be useful in certain cases. Referral to a neuropsychologist or psychotherapist for training in self-reliance and relaxation techniques including biofeedback, meditation, and self-hypnosis should also be considered. The treatment of obsessive compulsive disorders should involve both pharmacological and psychological measures. Medications can significantly reduce the symptoms in over 50 percent of patients. Clomipramine is generally considered the drug of first choice, but other drugs with serotonergic properties such as fluoxetine, paroxetine, and clonazepam can be used.

Adolescents Ages 1318 Years

Adolescents also experience feelings of sadness, anger, and loss as a result of their conditions (Donovan 1989). Chronic medical problems may affect an adolescent's functioning in new normative roles, impacting areas of his or her life such as dating. As a result, some adolescents may begin to be seen by their peers as loners. These adolescents may fear death and may withdraw from their environment, leading to further isolation. Parents may become increasingly concerned about an adolescent's psychosocial adjustment but may be fatigued by their challenging parenting role. Separation issues can be as complex and confusing for parents as they are for adolescents, and some parents may feel torn and ambivalent about letting go. This ambivalence can impact the extent to which the adolescent separates and engages with his or her peer group.

Philosophical perspective

This perspective introduces difficulties of aloneness, meaninglessness, despair, responsibility, and existential anxieties. From a philosophical perspective, one can consider each loss event in life as part of the eventual process of coming to terms with our own mortality. Avoidance of grief after any loss or change event can be viewed as part of the difficulty humans face in reflecting upon core issues of their existence and eventual demise. Every loss involves change and letting go that needs to be processed. Theorist Ernest Becker (1973) asserts that man can live more fully and authentically when one faces this ultimate reality. He postulates that the anxiety experienced after any loss has the fear of one's own death at its core.

Inhibition of Sperm Maturation

Politics and prudery also stand firmly in the path of progress. Political concerns pose a direct barrier to enlightenment when matters of birth control become an issue to be avoided for fear of offending the large segment of citizens (read voters) who either wish to avoid any discussion of sexual matters or believe that ''just say no'' is the only acceptable policy. Sexual desires, especially among the young, are not amenable to control by social agendas, political positions, or legislative action Our country's history of sexual prudery must bear a significant portion of the blame for the unprecedented high rate of teen pregnancies that politicians love to rail against for political points. Studies indicate no significant difference in sexual activity of American teens and teens in other Western countries. However, there is a dramatically higher pregnancy rate (and higher abortion rate and delivery rate) in the United States. This difference is perhaps attributable to a more open...

Birth Order and Personality

Some of these contrasts are striking. Voltaire, the third of three children, had an acrimonious relationship with his elder brother Armand, who became a follower of the Jansenists, a fanatical Catholic sect. Voltaire was particularly repelled by Armand's belief in the need to forgo life's pleasures in order to win God's grace. As a leader of the French Enlightenment, Voltaire was especially noted for his relentless attacks on the Catholic Church. He chose literature as a profession partly to spite his brother, whom he had repeatedly bested in impromptu poetry contests devised by his family.

White House Commission 2002 Report

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Preoperational View of the Dynamics of Improvisation

Creativity across fields is related to the aesthetic qualities of everyday life. Although not reducible to fool-proof procedures, everyday life has striking beauty and some order, all amidst constant flux. Everyday living requires backing away from enlightenment ideas of progress and perfection to embrace -and create - the rough-cut beauty of our real worlds.

The Freefloating Individualistic Structure Of Identity

Although non-Western cultures usually have more collectivist social structures, some exceptions have been pointed out, such as the Mbuti Pygmies of Africa and the people of Bhutan in the Himalayas. But, upon closer inspection, the individualism that can sometimes be identified in non-Western settings turns out to be embedded in traditional cultural learning. For example, Bhutanese culture still rests on a monastic system that instills in its members an urge to acquire and live in accordance with Buddhist knowledge and wisdom.5 At the heart of their belief system is the tenet that evil and the full range of this-world ills are the result of greed and ambition, and that enlightenment involves transcendence from the social sources of these contaminants. They learn about an interpretation of karma that inclines members to develop a conceptually bounded separate self that

Introduction Confucius and Confucianism

Given that Confucianism is a major intellectual and spiritual tradition in the world, it is natural to ask whether Confucianism offers a distinct way of looking at creativity, and whether Confucianism values and encourages creativity. Interestingly, there is no exact word equivalent to creativity in Chinese. Yet, Confucianism has often been looked upon by scholars as a system of thought that goes against novelty and creativity. It is therefore somewhat puzzling to find that China as the country where Confucianism has its roots has a history of flourishing art and invention. To understand this paradox, the basic ideas of Confucianism will be introduced in this entry. We will first discuss the multiple meanings of Confucianism, the life and work of its founder, and the evolutionary history of Confucianism, to set the stage for understanding the importance of studying the Confucian texts as a path to self-cultivation and enlightenment, which could be interpretable as the wellspring of...


Using a12-step recovery program's Step Eleven exercise, teach the client how to pray and meditate then assign them to contact his her higher power each day about his her grief. 33. Help the client to develop a written aftercare plan that specifically outlines a recovery plan (e.g., attend 12-step recovery program meetings, aftercare sessions, continued therapy, contact sponsor, turn it over daily, pray and meditate).

The Focus of Interest Product Versus Process

Some cultures place most value on creative products, whereas others see creativity more as a process. In Western cultures much of the focus is on producing a novel or original product. Lubart contrasts this with an Eastern perspective in which the key to creativity is the process more than the result. The creative process is cyclic, non-linear, and enlightenment-oriented. This was reinforced by Fryer-Bolingbroke's survey. For example according to Sharma-Sen, in India creativity is seen as self-actualization, self-fulfilment, and self-realization. In Indian creation mythology, the creator lets flow out of himself a part of his substance which progressively evolves into the world and then enters his world as himself (atman).

Therapeutic Interventions

Teach the client about the 12-step recovery program's concept of a higher power, and discuss how he she can use a higher power effectively in recovery (e.g., practice stopping and asking a higher power for strength and direction, practice daily prayer and meditation).

Dance and Healing Practices

Although dance is primarily regarded as an aesthetic art form, there is a long tradition in the healing arts and spiritual practices to include it. For example, ancient shaman practices incorporated dance as a means to communicate with spirits and to activate transformative energy necessary to excise unwanted spirits. Formal spiritual practices frequently require specific physical postures to be assumed during meditation or prayer, the same postures that are repeatedly found in dance forms around the world. Many ancient healing traditions such as yoga and chi kung have clearly prescribed sequences of dance-like movements that are practiced in a state of mindful awareness. Since around 3000 BCE until today, these ancient movement arts offer relief to human suffering by activating physiological and psychological energetic release, and by providing hope to those seeking enlightenment and wisdom. As Western medicine began to depart from these ancient practices, dance and movement were...

Dance Creativity and Research

More anthropological-based and critical inquiry subjects on dance are included in essays found in dance journals. One of the major journals dedicated to such topics is the Dance Research Journal. It offers essays on issues such as transnational migration patterns in the arts, especially theories and methods for understanding patterns of individual and mass human movements across world stages and the social-cultural experiences that such movement migrations engender. In this journal topics are examined with great care and detail. For example, writings suggest that the effects of human migration on dance in particular, and the arts in general, help researchers investigate issues such as citizenship and statelessness, labor refugeeism, border wars, religious and political occupations, and environmental displacement. Anthropological fieldwork studies document how dance is integrated into religious and ritual traditions and how these traditions inevitably influence subsequent dance...

Characterizing the Dark Side of Creativity

The changes, cited by McLaren, to the way that the function of art was perceived, during the age of Enlightenment and beyond, also help distinguish between different aspects of the dark side of creativity. Whether art, as a form of creativity, becomes a substitute for reality, or a rival to faith, or indeed that it leads nowhere except to the aggrandizement of the isolated artist and his will these arguably negative outcomes are difficult to see as intentionally damaging or harmful. The dark side of creativity thus manifests itself again as an undesirable or bad outcome product, but not one that is malevolent. The preceding example also once again highlights a difficulty posed by the dark side of creativity - namely, how to decide what is bad and what is good. Some might see artistic works that call religious faith into question as liberating and progressive, in the same way that some see acts of terror as vital steps on the path to freedom.

When Discoveries Are Made

Equally important to understanding discovery is that insights seem to occur more often when scientists are not directly working on a problem than when they are. Thus, several studies have shown that only about a third of scientific problems are solved by a direct, brute force approach. An equal number are solved when scientists give upon on the original problem and begin working on a related problem. The remaining third of the problems get solved during leisure-time activities, which range from going on vacation to taking a shower to dreaming the answer in one's sleep. Some investigators, such as Linus Pauling have even gone so far as to claim to be able to 'program' their minds to make use of this leisure time. Pauling said that when he worked on a problem that he could not solve directly, he would turn to something else during his work hours, and think very hard about the unsolved problem every night before he went to sleep. After a few weeks, he would forget to think about the...

What Practitioners Say It Does

Meditation is lauded often as a means of managing stress. Stress is now widely acknowledged as contributing to and exacerbating many health problems (see the introduction to Part Three). Therapies such as meditation have many proponents because these approaches provide effective relaxation techniques that help patients deal with stressful situations. During meditation, people learn to redirect their attention to the present, reacting neither to memories of the past nor thoughts of the future. Preoccupation with past and future is believed to be a major source of chronic stress. The mental training that meditation provides teaches individuals to be aware of what causes their stress, thereby giving them a sense of control. Control makes the difference between positive and detrimental stress. The benefits of relaxation and stress reduction, in turn, can reduce levels of stress hormones, improve immune functioning, diminish chronic pain, improve mood, and even possibly enhance fertility....

The Ancient Western View

According to the Bible in the Hebrew tradition, human beings do not have the ability to create new things. All things, including human beings, are God's creation. The Book of Genesis clearly describes God's original act of creation In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The description also includes God's creative process in bringing into being the heavens, the earth, the living beings, and everything else. Particularly worthy of note are three features of God's creation. First, God is the sole creator of everything. Second, God brings new things into being from nothingness. Third, God's creation represents all goodness, including moral goodness. The second and third points naturally give rise to the emphasis of novelty and moral goodness in the ancient Western view of creativity.

The Modern Western Conception

The notion of human creativity took a new turn for renewed emphasis at the time of the Enlightenment. This was the time when people recognized and celebrated their individual rights and abilities to understand the universe and to direct their own destiny. These new thoughts were supported by the achievement of new inventions and new discoveries, and other human success especially in areas of science and technology. More specifically, individual creative ideas and products were now publicly recognized and were even officially honored in some European countries. Great Britain, for example, offered prizes and even patents and copyrights to creative individuals for their solutions to technological problems starting from the earlier part of the seventeenth century. This modern Western conception of human creativity was also reinforced by many important new theories and new disciplines formulated in the nineteenth century, distinguishing clearly the notion of human creativity from that of...

East West Comparison

In the Eastern world, the parallel shift however is less complete, with a stronger continuity connecting the ancient view and the modern conception. Human beings have now a more important role in bringing forth the creative process. Rooted in Confucianism and Daoism, the modern Easterners especially the Chinese start to believe that meditation and self-cultivation can lead people to achieve a connection to heaven or greatness, and therefore, to a high level of creativity. In this Eastern tradition, while moral goodness and usefulness in terms of social values to society are stressed, novelty remains not the most important defining feature of creativity.

Beliefs on Which It Is Based

The major foundation for meditation's popularity, especially as a benefit to personal health, is the belief that the mind can cause changes in the body. Many cultures, particularly those in Asia where meditative strategies have long been included in health regimens, have relied on this idea for millennia. A more recent underlying belief is the idea that stress itself has harmful effects on the body. Because meditation emphasizes mental training and relaxation and imparts a sense of control, it is considered a potent agent against stress and anxiety. That is part of the reason that meditation has gained widespread acceptance as a valid, beneficial medical therapy.

Research Evidence to Date

Many studies have documented the correlation between meditation and the reduction of stress, anxiety, and panic states. Research documents the relaxation response produced by meditation and prayer, a response involving decreased heart and respiration rates and eased muscle tension. Meditation has been shown also to help control negative thinking and assist people in managing potentially stressful situations in a calm fashion. Research evidence shows that meditation helps decrease chronic pain. Meditation performed regularly over an eight-week period reduced participants' pain by as much as 50 .

What It Can Do for You

The relaxation, stress-reduction and pain relief benefits of meditation are well documented. It has been found to reduce lactic acid in high levels, which is associated with anxiety. Mainstream medical practitioners often recommend meditation as an adjunct to conventional treatment or as a preventive health measure. Meditation can ease muscle tension, lower oxygen consumption and heart rate, and with practice, decrease blood pressure. Therefore it is often recommended for patients with hypertension or heart disease in conjunction with dietary and other positive lifestyle changes. Regular practice of meditation can enhance one's sense of control and improve self-esteem. Meditation can also produce spiritual growth, calm and serenity.

Does Creativity Involve Diverse States of Consciousness

One rarely hears about altered states of consciousness in creativity - at least beyond discussion of Mihaly Csikszentmi-halyi's flow, where a person becomes totally involved in an activity. In sports, the term 'in the zone' is also used for this special state. Interestingly, Baruss in his text, Alterations of Consciousness, describes flow and its eight features, in the same chapter as Maslow's Peak Experiences (related to self-actualizing persons), and also aspects of meditation.

Receptive and Diffuse Mind States

Consider other crucial mind states in creativity, notably involving the incubation stage or opening of one's mind to new insights. Rather than intense and one-pointed, this state may be diffuse. The two styles have been loosely compared to shamatha and vipassana approaches in meditation, as well as to aspects of Eastern models of creativity.

Note about the Next Three Chapters Qi Gong Tai Chi and Yoga

Whereas Qigong and Tai Chi come from China, Yoga originated in ancient India probably around the same time that Qigong arose. Qigong and Yoga place primary emphasis on meditation and spiritual development. Tai Chi, the newer practice, focuses more on developing strength and balance. All three incorporate meditation, balance, strength and healing. Find your own comfort zone after looking into what each has to offer, and remember that different practitioners of the same art may suit you better than others.

Feelings of People in Flow Condition

Csikszentmihalyi's research reported in great detail the feelings of the people who experienced flow. This research involved over 200 people with different background such as athletes, chess masters, rock climbers, dancers, high school basketball players, and composers of music (Csikszentmihalyi and Csikszentmihalyi, 1988 7). They were people who spent a lot of time in exhausting activities which gave them no money and little recognition. Results of the research demonstrated that flow was characterized by high involvement, deep concentration, intrinsic motivation, and the perception of high challenges matched by adequate personal skills. People involved in flow state described themselves being completely focused and attentive during the activity. They were totally involved in what they were doing. People illustrated flow as an altered state of consciousness, bringing them outside common life, as if they were transported into a new reality. They described the feeling of a sense of...

Education and the Intimate European Contacts

Gandhi returned to India in 1891 as a Barrister of the Inner Temple only to learn that his mother had died while he was in London, his family concealing the truth from him. An anguished Gandhi received solace from his spiritual teacher Raychandbhai, a highly successful pearl dealer who nevertheless managed to remain completely detached from his activities. Gandhi learned from him the basic lesson that life itself is equivalent to pure meditation there is no abstract entity such as the inner being - the body and the mind operate in terms of one's Karma, comparable to Bhagavad Gita's - 'activity in inactivity and inactivity in activity.' The childhood values embedded in bhakti (devotion) merged with the doctrine of Karma (selfless deeds) following the dicta of the Bhagavad Gita. The process of the amalgamation of Bhakti and Karma that began in England reached its culmination at this point.

Creativity and Politics

Notwithstanding the isolation of Esterhazy, Haydn did not write in a social or political vacuum. Haydn created his works during a period of scientific and political change and revolution. The industrial revolution and the changes to the civic landscape that came in its wake, along with the advances in scientific inquiry that accompanied the Enlightenment formed the backdrop of Haydn's world. Several events helped shape his musical development and creativity. 60 000-100 000 people, making it probably the most destructive earthquake in recorded human history. The tragedy occurred on All Saints Day, an important festival and holiday in the Christian Church's calendar giving rise to questions of God's immanence and ability to protect the innocent. The necessary theodicic revisions resulting from the chaos brought into question ecclesiastical authority and a consequent loss of faith of the populace in their pastors. Ultimately the effects of these revisions informed the Austrian...

Description Of Social Patterns And Trends

Many social demographers, along with social historians, statisticians, and other scholars have used census data to describe the fortunes and problems of the American people (and of other societies). For much of American history, the decennial population census has been the primary (and only) source of information about the size, distribution, and characteristics of the population. Moreover, census data can be analyzed to provide valuable insights on important social and economic issues (Anderson 1988). Demographic data, as with all evidence, can be manipulated by partisans to speak on one side or the other of contested issues. In spite of these tendencies, the tradition of the census as the nation's fact finder'' and as a source of public enlightenment has been an important backdrop for the development of contemporary demography.

Position of the Analyst Transference and the Work of Analysis

Interpretations are therefore not offered to explain or convey meanings hut to evoke more speech, opening up further passages to the unconscious. For Lacan, a good interpretation resembles a hybrid between a quotation of the patient's own words (often in an inverse form I and a metaphor that does not nail down a meaning or inform the analysand of a hidden meaning but opens the patient's discourse to a multiplicity of meanings. Although the analysand invests the analyst with a great deal of knowledge and projects that she is the subject who is supposed to know ' the analyst 111 fact knows nothing, and it is this nothingness that is the greatest gift she can give. Akin to Lacan's definition of love as giving something you don't have to somebody you don't know ' the analyst's most significant gift is to offer nothingness a non-narcissistic ego that in turn elicits speech. By speaking from within the position of the objet a, the analyst stands in the place of the unspeakable, of that...

Additional Resources

Meditation Meditation, a specific state of attending to a particular focus while withdrawing one's attention from the outside world, (Snarr, Norris, & Fahrion, 2001, p. 307), is used effectively to support recovery. An alternative to the addictive state, meditation slows the mind and body to achieve a restful state normally achieved by addicts only through their addictive elixir. By slowing down the central nervous system, the client calms the mind and reduces stress. When the brain rhythms are slowed, the brain produces mind-altering and brain-healing Breathing and hand temperature training are two basic meditation techniques. Regulating breathing is the first skill learned by beginning students of meditation. The goal is to replace shallow thoracic breathing with deeper diaphragmatic breathing, a calming practice. Hand temperature training, in which clients learn to adjust the warmth and blood flow in their hands, is an example of biofeedback which also integrates the mind body...

Speculations on the Mental State of Creative Individuals Prior to the Romantic

It was during the eighteenth century that the term 'genius' was introduced in reference to individuals who displayed a high degree of creative ability. Different from the Renaissance 'genio' and the associated 'imitatio-ideal,' the Enlightenment genius was defined as one who was in possession of an innate power that manifested itself in works of great imaginative creation where the decisive characteristic was profound novelty and the originally creative. Although most commentators on genius acknowledged certain subrational components, the leitmotif most frequently encountered stressed the rational processes of genius. Perhaps the model exposition of the Enlightenment conception of genius is Alexander Gerard's An Essay on Genius. Defined as the faculty of invention by means of which a man is qualified for making new discoveries in science, or for producing original works of art, the creative power in genius was conceived as originating in an active imagination. Asserting that an...

The Romantics Redefinition of Genius and the Functions It Tended to Serve

The application of the term 'genius' to select individuals during the eighteenth century marked, as we have seen, the arrival of a new model for man. Generally deprived of wealth or privileged status, men of genius, or those who aspired to be such, tended to challenge the existing hierarchial order by substituting innate creative ability as a superior criterion for the evaluation of men. D'Alembert, an Enlightenment spokesperson for the man of letters, recognized three factors separating people birth, wealth, and intelligence, but only intelligence was deemed worthy of true esteem. Unlike the others, he argued, intelligence is a dependable national 'resource,' by its nature inexhaustible and incapable of being 'taken' from its possessors. De Saint-Simon, writing a few years after the demise of the Old Regime in France, was less guarded in his vision of the future society it was to be dominated by men of genius scientists, artists, men of ideas. In fact, he cautioned the power holders...

Implications for the Contemporary Debate

Applicable to all historical periods. Rather, what distinguishes the nineteenth and twentieth centuries from the seventeenth and eighteenth, Jaspers reasoned, is a general mood or inclination in Western society that craves the mysterious, the unusual, the undefinable, and the blatantly diseased. Accordingly, although the Enlightenment tended to reward creative individuals who were healthy and rational with the distinction of genius, the nineteenth and twentieth centuries (since the time of romanticism, that is) have shown a distinct preference for those creative individuals who are diseased.

Psychological Reactions To Rapeposttraumatic Stress Disorder And Other Symptoms

Pies were consistently the most effective in treating PTSD. The two most effective therapies for PTSD are cognitive therapy and exposure therapy. A form of each will be described in detail in the remainder of this chapter. Briefly, the cognitive therapies help the person change or modify negative thoughts beliefs that occur as the result of a rape in order to improve emotions exposure therapies help the woman safely revisit the memory of the trauma repeatedly in her mind with the goal of processing the painful emotions associated with a rape. It is important to note that other therapies have also been found to be helpful in reducing PTSD symptoms, such as relaxation therapy, assertiveness training, and stress inoculation therapy. Also, other approaches not considered psychotherapy, such as yoga, meditation, and spirituality, target the overall well-being of the individual and are also important in creating a balance within the individual and her recovery. Other chapters will provide...

Meaning Boredom And Selfdistracting Pain

Dom and nothingness to remain workable. Although boredom can give rise to activation for purposes of escape, it can also deactivate. Like many drugs that need ever increasing dosages in order to have the intended effect, activities with ever greater distracting power are required. People habituate to their activities and move on in search of alternative sources of distraction. The result is a deep sense of ennui wherein the person loses the ability to become excited over time, not even the most arousing sorts of activities can take them away from themselves.

The Frankfurt Schools Critique

The central text of the Frankfurt School for our purposes is Dialectic of Enlightenment. This was written during the Second World War by Theodor Adorno and Max Horkheimer (the latter coining the phrase ''critique of instrumental reason''). A highly unusual work, Dialectic is best approached as presenting a certain history of reason. Adorno and Horkheimer take it that this conception of reason comes to self-consciousness in the 18th century Enlightenment. They trace it forward, also, to modern times, and, audaciously, back to Homer's Greece. Clearer than the historical forms of this ''dialectic'' and its exact causality, however, is the general schema of ''instrumental reason.'' Through its historical excursuses and other analyses, Dialectic depicts how a wide range of ends or values, concerning knowledge, morality, health, and culture, become increasingly construed in terms of the rationality expressed by Bacon. Ends or values, that is, are becoming interpreted or bound up with the...

Listing Pleasurable Activities

(Examples taking a walk, going to a church or synagogue group, playing a musical instrument, walking the dog, watching a TV program, going to the library, talking on the phone to a friend, talking to a therapist, playing a sport, watching a comedy movie, having sex, riding a bicycle, visiting the Humane Society, listening to music, practicing a hobby, sitting in a cafe, cooking, driving, sewing, dancing, working at a homeless shelter, writing in a journal, taking photographs, taking a class, painting or drawing, soaking in the bathtub, eating at a restaurant, listening to a relaxation tape, shopping, hiking, gardening, praying, meditating, going for a swim, eating lunch outside, attending a lecture, washing your face or hair, lying out in the sun, playing with a pet)

Definitions and Conceptions

the phenomenon encompassing the processes of mourning, coping, interaction, planning, and psychosocial reorganization that are stimulated and begun in part in response to the awareness of the impending loss of a loved one and the recognition of associated losses in the past, present, and future. It is seldom explicitly recognized, but the truly therapeutic experience of anticipatory grief mandates a delicate balance among the mutually conflicting demands of simultaneously holding onto, letting go of, and drawing closer to the dying patient. (Rando, 1986 24)

Romanticist Approaches

Another philosophical tradition, romanticism, equates creativity with freedom, and views reward as a kind of constraint on freedom that discourages creativity. This view can be traced to the early renaissance in the Italian city states and was associated with such subsequent popularizers as Jean Jacques Rousseau in France, and the American transcendentalists Emerson and Thoreau. The romanticists saw the excesses of early industrialization as producing emptiness in the lives of working people. The romanticists embraced sensuality and nature, and rejected the enlightenment's dependence on reason in place of intuition and feeling. In modern guise, romanticism rejects constraints on freedom as antithetical to creativity. We hasten to add that we are using the term romanticism in the historical and philosophical sense and not with the alternative meaning associated with a lack of clear and rational thought. Specifically, some researchers

Environments that Support Creativity

Environments that foster creativity cannot have the old 'look busy' attitude of the assembly line where a minute of distraction can lead to a breakdown. The creative process involves periods of immersion and incubation, of mulling over an idea, where no apparent 'work' may be seen to be going on. Periods of relative isolation, meditation, and reflection are required. Many creative scientists spend time both in the world of theory and the world of application. Along with freedom form external constraints, creative individuals often need the time to be alone with their creative process and not be interrupted. This is not to say that they do not also need time for vigorous exchanges and interactions. The creative process requires both isolation and interaction, and environments that permit both those 'moments' in the process.

Sensitivity Openness Absorption and Synesthesia

Heightened aesthetic sensibility in creative and spiritual experience touches the very core of an individual's being, evoking deep emotions like awe, wonder, and ecstasy. Aesthetic sensibility suggests increased physiological sensitivity. In 1996, Colin Martindale and others compared galvanic skin response to creativity scores. They found that creative individuals are more sensitive to physiological stimuli, stay alert toward incoming stimuli regardless of having developed cortical models for them, demonstrate larger fluctuations in arousal levels, and habituate more slowly than less creative individuals. Sensitivity is also important to spiritual development. Meditation forms the central practice of many spiritual traditions. In 1999, Michael Murphy and Steven Donovan cited numerous neuropsychological studies supporting meditation's capacity to enhance empathy, sensitivity to stimuli and overall perceptual ability. Terry V. Lesh, for example, found in 1970 that Zen meditation...

Creative and Spiritual Contemplation

Horan's concept of intention as the basis for creativity seems insufficient to produce creative works that also require talent and intelligence. He suggested, however, that the root of creativity (which he calls the vacuous state) contains powerful unconscious intentions, or subliminal attentional flows, that also nourish intelligence. These deeper intentions produce intelligent creative works and expressions. Willis Harman and Howard Rheingold in Higher Creativity Liberating the Unconscious for Breakthrough Insights suggested that, the unconscious mind can be yoked willfully through imagery, affirmation, meditation, etc., to make creative choices. In 2000, Tobin Hart suggested that a special internal mind-set is required for courting creative inspiration. It involves focus, trust, letting go, listening and embodiment. Focus is a deliberate attempt to use prayer, meditation, concentration, etc., to ask specific questions or direct attention more fully on some phenomenon. Whereas the...

Implications of the Conversation With Glaucon

Of course, the Christian answer is religious through God's grace. And since philosophy, at least since the Enlightenment, has been a predominantly secular inquiry, it has by and large ignored medieval and early modern Christian thought. One way to view psychoanalysis is as an attempted secular appropriation of the Christian therapeutic tradition.

Applications In Genetics

One way that misgivings about genetic engineering are expressed is in terms of the religious belief that the gene pool is God's sacred creation and should be preserved. Genetic engineering is sometimes characterized as a dangerous Promethean adventure which involves appropriating knowledge which is properly the province of the deity. In our post-Enlightenment state of knowledge this view does not survive inspection. Gene pools are more plausibly seen not as the product of divine providence, but as the piecemeal accretions of billions of years of accident, mishap, and good fortune.

Synchronicity in Chaos Theory

Bird, challenged the dictum of evolutionary biology, that random selection is order arising from disorder. Mathematically speaking, randomness is order. Since the Enlightenment, biological science has ignored and diminished coincidence, chance, and chaos, and has thus disenfranchised those, like Jung, who argued for meaning in coincidence and chance. Bird stated that chaos implies an endless order. Evolutionary biology rests on the assumption that although events are fundamentally random, some are selected because they are better adapted than others to the surrounding world. Bird said that synchronicity can be explained if we view the world not as random-selective, but as iterative-sequential. In a world view that is iterative-sequential, coincidence would be expected. His theory would then encompass the presence of coincidence and chance as being part of a mathematical recursiveness, an order of infinity.

Freud and Group Psychology

Precarious liberal values of reason and individual freedom were under threat from two sides 1) the traditional authoritarianism of the ancicnt regimes dominated by monarchy, aristocracy, the military, and the church under the Austro-Hungarian variant of which Freud himself lived for nearly all of his life, and 2) the mobilization of the masses, as they were named not only by their detractors but also by some of their political advocates. Although Freud was liberal in his political sympathies, he was critical of what he saw as the irrational utopia-nism of mass movements. The psychoanalytic movement instituted by Freud has had as one of its moving principles the defense of individuality and reason, in this respect being part of the movement that began with the 18th-ccntury Enlightenment Rustin 20011.

Complementary Therapies for Some Common Ailments

Alcohol and drug abuse Acupuncture, meditation, mental imagery. depression Hypericum (St. John's wort, but not if you are on prescription medication), lavender, yoga, tai chi, meditation, light therapy, massage therapy. Pre-menstrual syndrome (PMS) Lavender or parsley oil in a warm bath, yoga, meditation, chasteberry, black cohosh. sleep problems Valerian tea, warm bath, sage, meditation.

Patricia L Gerbarg and Richard P Brown

Nowhere is the link between mind and body more evident than in the experience of abuse. This connection gives us a unique opportunity to employ body-centered methods to heal emotional scars. While talk-based and cognitive therapies can be of great benefit, there are situations in which mind-body approaches, such as yoga, qigong, tai chi, breathing practices, and meditation can be extremely beneficial and sometimes necessary for full recovery. Trauma survivors need to lower anxiety and feel secure to engage in therapy and to develop trust in their therapist as well as other people they want to be close to. Yoga breathing, movement, and meditation engender feelings of safety and calmness. Movement practices help develop better awareness of the body and its boundaries. Mastery of physical postures with increasing strength and balance helps to build confidence. awareness should be focused on the practices. The most effective programs include movement, breathing, and meditation. Here is a...

Classifications of Complementary and Alternative Medicine

Fort Iii Osteotomy

Mind-body interventions entail a wide variety of techniques to improve the mind's capacity to affect bodily function and symptoms. Cognitive therapies, biofeedback, meditation, hypnosis, prayer, and creative outlets such as dance, music, and art are common examples of mind-body interventions. Energy therapies, which involve the use of energy fields, are categorized into three types biofield therapies, bioelectromagnetic-based therapies, and acupuncture. The term biofield was coined in 1994 at a meeting at the NIH, and the biofield hypothesis purports that all objects radiate an electromagnetic field. If an object such as part of a healer's body, a nutritional supplement, or an externally applied electromagnetic field is brought near to or inside the body of an individual, the frequencies radiated by the object or field would interact with the individual's field. Biofields have been described traditionally by the ancient Indians as prana, by the Chinese as qi (or chi), by the Japanese...

Psychological perspective

Facilitating forgiveness within the grieving process enables survivors to reinterpret and reframe past and present negative experiences in order to identify preexisting internal strengths that will promote a sense of personal empowerment in the face of current adversity. Augsburger (1981) suggests that the root meaning of the word forgiveness implies a process of letting go. Letting go can be seen as a journey (similar to grief) that involves incremental steps that necessitate authentically working through the anger, sorrow, betrayal, and loss of trust in order to gradually release bitterness and hostility.

Synesthesia and Related Phenomena

A number of studies over the past decade have documented the relationship between creativity and openness to thinking in both visual artists and student populations (assessing psychometric creativity). Visual artists have also been found to report the frequent incidence of altered states of consciousness (again, as predicted by absorption). Individuals actively engaged with the induction of altered states of consciousness, such as those related to contemplative (absorptive) meditation, report a higher incidence of synesthesia. One recent study reported that among long-term meditators, the prevalence rate of synesthesia was found to be 86 . A current notion is that the long-term practice of meditation involves an attunement to a background field of consciousness (that of synesthetic functioning ) that is necessary for creativity.

Evolution of Models of Loss and Bereavement

Freud offers one of the earliest models for consideration. He referred to the emotion present in melancholia as 'mourning', meaning that one is searching for an attachment that has been lost. Using the concepts of the ego and id, he discussed the need for the ego to disengage from that which has been lost and to eventually withdraw energy from the lost object. The bereaved was not grieving just one object rather, he she was grieving and letting go of multiple layers of attachments (stored memories and symbols) that are involved in the formation of a relationship. In a slow and arduous process, the reality of the loss is accepted by the ego and instinctual energy is withdrawn thus the ego can accommodate the loss and search for new attachments. Although he does not provide a clear framework for operationalizing the process, his theory offers an understanding of the multiple levels of human attachment and the difficulty facing the bereaved who must undertake the task of grief work....

Psychosocial and Spiritual History

A spiritual history provides information about what gives meaning to the patient's life. Spirituality helps patients cope with serious illnesses, debilitation, and dying. This part of the medical history provides excellent insight into the patient's spiritual needs and belief systems. Meditation and prayer can complement medical care. Spirituality can offer hope to those with chronic disease and may even provide new meaning to their suffering. Several studies have revealed the beneficial effect of spirituality with regard to stress reduction, recovery from illness, mitigation of pain, and faster recovery from surgery. Puchalski and Romer (2000) suggested that a spiritual history might begin with an introductory question such as

Primary Prevention A Focus on Lifestyle

Ten minutes of relaxation, silence, or meditation daily for stress reduction. intima-media thickness), angina, left ventricular hypertrophy, and overall mortality. A review of controlled trials using Transcendental Meditation (TM) techniques (many of which also compared TM to progressive muscle relaxation and other stress reduction techniques) found the following (Walton et al., 2004) Currently, the data do not precisely define the minimum time needed in meditation or relaxation to achieve health benefits many studies use 15 to 20 minutes daily (Lane et al., 2007). A reasonable conjecture of the minimal effective dose, which follows the work of Depak Chopra (1993), is 10 minutes a day. Chopra believes that nothing more than 10 minutes of silence is required. Progressive increases in time will enhance the benefits, but a place to start is needed, as with the BMI criterion. 3. Ten (10) minutes of relaxation or meditation exercise daily Minutes of relaxation or meditation daily This is a...

Provide a brief description of the types of mindbody therapy that have been used to treat patients with LBP

Cognitive-behavioral programs are a component of many established pain treatment centers. These programs focus on educating patients and teaching coping skills in a highly structured group setting under the guidance of a clinical psychologist. They frequently incorporate hypnosis, meditation, and biofeedback techniques

Acupuncture Yoga and Homeopathic Remedies

Focuses on the use of postures (asanas) and breathing exercises (pranayama) traditionally used in India to purify the body and maximize the impact of meditation practice many different schools must be used with caution by those with glaucoma, retinal detachment, or at high risk for muscle strain or fracture. Part of traditional Chinese medicine also used to cultivate qi includes breathing exercises, meditation, and physical movement used in the martial arts and to generate energy to be used in healing.

Infinite Possibility And Choice Fatigue

The weariness of infinite possibility and information management has led many people to search out regenerative dissociation solutions. An entire consumer industry, consisting of many diverse services, has surfaced in order to meet the burgeoning dissociative needs of people. People are tuning out with numerous variations of meditation and traditional Eastern practices that produce a contentless state of mind. They are following a plethora of gurus who show them the way to a therapeutic emptiness that can eliminate their buildup of psychic static. Vacuous mental states are being aided by designer drugs, hypnogogic music, consciousness-dissolving techniques that use electronic screens as trance facilitators, compulsive exercise, trivia mesmerization, collecting fetishism, and endless other monotony devices. All of these have the effect of specializing and downsizing the mental world of people and reducing its scope of content. The same trend can be seen with regard to the madness...

Resolution and Growth

Lives, the more the process is retarded. Resolution does mean making new choices thus, to talk about nothing else or to grieve without breaks is not healthy either. Resolution implies an eventual letting go of past realities however, more importantly, it necessitates an integration of the deceased into the survivor's life in a different way - a way that promotes future growth and meaningfulness. Silverman and Klass (1996) do not emphasize a 'letting go' rather they promote a focus on negotiating and renegotiating the meaning of loss over time. Death is unchanging and permanent but the process involved is continuous. Further, they state that the meaning of grief resolution 'is tied to the meaning of our bonds with significant people in our lives, the meaning of membership in family and community, and the meaning we ascribe to our individual lives in the face of absolute proof of our own mortality' (1996 22).

Spirituality Religion as a Healing Pathway for Survivors of Sexual Violence

For survivors who are interested in utilizing spiritual religious coping strategies as they heal from sexual abuse, several activities might be beneficial. Defining what spirituality religiosity means in their personal life is the first step. Some individuals might adhere to specific doctrines and practices as recommended by a religious denomination, but for others spirituality might entail believing in a higher power and engaging in explorations of nature and meditation. Once survivors have began to clarify the meaning of spirituality in their lives, engaging in applicable activities such as prayer, meditation, relaxation exercises, and so on, might be helpful. Other activities include reading spiritual religious writings about healing and growth and listening to related music. Many spiritual religious activities can be done in solitude or with groups. Private activities may help a survivor to strengthen their personal sense of spirituality, while attending groups (e.g., church...

Traditional Medicine In The Tropics

Traditional medicine practices are as varied as the societies of the world. Local practices for acute and chronic illnesses might include prayer, meditation, diets, fasting, massage, exercise, herbal remedies, acupuncture, skin scraping, and scarification. The concepts underlying these practices are also varied. Underlying principles of traditional therapies in some societies are related to the balance or homeostasis between negative (bad, dark, devil, etc) and positive (good, light, angels, etc) forces. Ayurvedic medicine is practiced throughout South Asia and roughly translates to knowledge of life. This common practice seeks to promote spiritual harmony based upon the theory that health exists when there is a balance between three fundamental bodily humors. Other concepts such as witchcraft or the evil eye are prominent in dozens of countries. The evil, or covetous, eye may be felt to be the cause of a curse, misfortune, or disease and various amulets, decorations, or procedures...

The Bodys Response to Stress

Dangers Stress

The workplace can be stressful, and this is often related to how much control an employee has over his or her job and its conditions. Also, daily events such as a fender bender, loss of house keys, or theft of a purse or wallet can be very troublesome. Because of the dangers of stress and cumulative layers of stress, we must develop styles and support systems to help us handle it. Stress busters include play and exercise, meditation, improved diet, and medical care.

Loss of some aspect of self

We cannot experience a relationship loss without losing an integral part of and sense of who we are. If there was a relationship, we have invested some part of ourselves in it. Who we view ourselves to be comes from the feedback in the interactions dynamics of relationships. A major component of the grief process involves letting go of a former identity, grieving that part of you which is gone forever, and rebuilding a new identity. This loss of some aspect of self not only occurs in relationships with others, but also in any situation that demands change in personal identity. In addition to the above, loss of some aspect of self is also experienced in child abuse, rape, illness, physical change, loss of hopes, dreams, and major change and disappointments. Professional burnout and professional impairment are profound losses of self. Losses of aspects of self appear in various ways

Paganism Versus Fundamentalist Religion The Medieval Europeans

The Vandals were a Teutonic tribe that governed their North African kingdom from 439 to 534. Other tribes, such as the Huns, Vikings, and Visigoths, also invaded and pillaged large tracts of the Empire. While in the process of rampaging the lands, and especially the cities they wished to conquer, they destroyed any books or other written materials they could find. They had a savage disregard for intellectual or spiritual enlightenment, being interested only in the spoils of battle and the domination of their victims.

Spiritual and Existential Health

No one would dispute the fact that religion can transform completely the life of an individual. Endless cases can be found of people whom religious enlightenment rescued from the brink of despair or suicide, and for whom it paved the way for new life directions. We hear of hopelessly ad

The role of consciousness in SPAARS

Whether or not someone is conscious of the content of these various representational systems depends on the extent of the person's attention to the information in question, the level of activation of that information in the system, the current configuration of schematic models, and the influence of any inhibitory processes within the system (see below). We also want to emphasise the distinction made by Lambie and Marcel (2002) and others, between a reflective consciousness and an immersed non-reflective consciousness especially in relation to the phenomenology of emotion. So, for example, it is possible to close your eyes and concentrate on the sounds you can hear or the sensations in the body or the flow of thoughts, whereas usually most of these sounds or sensations or thoughts may impinge very little on conscious awareness. One can even be aware of being aware of such experiences in a state of reflective consciousness (a meditation-type technique that is being increasingly used in...

History of the Study of Genetic Disease From the Greeks to Garrod

The Forgotten Origins of Medical Genetics With the Enlightenment the floodgates to inquiry were opened for medical scientists and progress was made on nearly all fronts in understanding pathology. However, in spite of eloquent writings on heredity in general and on rare cases in particular, few references to specific genetic diseases were made before the twentieth century. Yet among those few instances are to be found brilliant insights.

History of Public Health and Sanitation in the West since 1700

Yellow fever did not enter the colonies until the end of the seventeenth century. Unlike smallpox, which was obviously spread from one individual to another, yellow fever was a strange and unaccountable pestilence that brought death in a horrible fashion to its victims. It struck the colonies only occasionally, but news of its presence in the West Indies led authorities in every coastal town to institute quarantines against vessels from that area. A series of epidemics, which struck the entire eastern coast beginning in 1793, led to the establishment of permanent quarantine officers and temporary health boards in nearly every major port. The limited sanitary and quarantine laws of the eighteenth century, many of which dated back several hundred years, were to prove inadequate under the impact of rapid urbanism and industrialism after 1750. Fortunately, that eighteenth-century period of intellectual ferment, the Age of Enlightenment, created a new awareness of the need for a healthy...

History and Geography

Sorts, scrofula had no place in the medical consciousness. Nor did Italian or German medical men, with no national attachment to a true line of kings, have much reason to emphasize scrofula as a disease entity, but rather viewed its separated symptoms as different entities. By the eighteenth century, some medical reference works betray an Enlightenment embarrassment in identifying scrofula as a disease that had a nonmedical cure, the Touch. In discussing the disease, British writers of the eighteenth century drew on a tradition of literature that rested on the works of Richard Wiseman, surgeon to Charles II. In the earlier nineteenth century, with the disappearance of the French line of kings, scrofula continued to be identified, although perhaps more regularly in its adjectival form and applied to a symptom. The notion that lay behind the name did not long survive germ theory, when attention turned away from collections of symptoms to causative microorganisms.

Classification Clinical Manifestations and Pathology

During the Middle Ages, the literature on epilepsy propounded two contrasting views. On the one hand, the falling evil was bound to demoniac beliefs and theological speculations on the other, physicians clung to the idea of a definite natural disease. Little effort was made to force the issue, however physicians rarely discussed the theological aspects and seem, moreover, to have been unable to rid themselves of traditional definitions and explanations. By the end of the sixteenth century, this appears to have changed, the debate became open, involving the role of the devil, witchcraft, and various types of magical treatment. Despite many efforts to define epilepsy and classify types of seizures, little progress was made medically, although, gradually, the idea that epilepsy was a natural disease did gain more credence, especially after the Age of Enlightenment.

The Cancer Counselling Center of Ohio

Counselling for the dying involves a reinstatement of harmony of body, mind, spirit, and emotion. In the final stages of dying, the mind cognitively accepts the likelihood or inevitability of death the emotions have resolved quarrels and guilts with other people living or dead, and have moved beyond the anger of perhaps being cheated of a more productive life the spirit has accepted whatever sense of immortality or nothingness, welcome or anonymity that may come after death and the body prepares itself for dying, perhaps even by ceasing to fight with its own resources any longer.

Acu Points to Slow the Flow

I find that irregular diet, emotional stress, and overwork are frequently at the root of chronic diarrhea. After our initial exam, your total condition will be taken into account as a comprehensive treatment plan is designed for you. I use acupuncture, nutrition, and Qi Gong meditation to slow the flow. Chinese herbs can also be used to treat underlying conditions that lead to poor overall health and loose stools. Qi Gong meditations such as standing facing a beautiful forest, pond, or stream while you breathe deeply in through your nose imagining the peacefulness and majesty of nature flowing into you and exhaling all the unwanted tension or toxins out of your mouth are a great way to help with the excess worry and stress that often accompany diarrhea. Depending on the diagnosis, herbs such as Bai Tou Weng, Huang Lian, Fu Ling, and Bai Zhu will be used to reduce the spasms in your colon and regain optimal health for preventative care of your digestive tract.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

You can also try alternative remedies such as taking enteric-coated capsules of peppermint oil three times a day between meals (skip this one if you have heartburn), or explore yoga, meditation, or hypnosis to lessen stress and anxiety, which can sometimes wind up in your gut. Also, for women who notice IBS flare-ups around the time of menstruation, take evening primrose oil or black cohosh.

The Asylum Movement and Moral Treatment

The asylums of the nineteenth century were a new phenomenon. Their origins lay in the rationalism and optimism associated with the Age of Enlightenment. This eighteenth-century philosophy posited that although man was corrupt and imperfect, this was not his natural state. The belief that men could better themselves, and that society was responsible for assisting its more imperfect members to better themselves, led to humanistic and progressive social movements. Naturalistic and secular explanations of human behavior replaced mystical or divine explanations. The successes of science in astronomy and physics, the rapid strides made in technology, and the struggles for political democracy in the United States, France, and England were practical proofs of the validity of the belief that man could control his environment and improve his life on earth (Barton 1987 Dain 1964 Grob 1994). At the time these theories of treatment were being developed in the late eighteenth century, numerous...

Psychotherapy process research

In fact, many of the findings and methods of process research readily lend themselves to useful application by clinicians. For example, Benjamin's (1993) Structural Analysis of Social Behavior (SASB) offers a framework from which to consider therapeutic interactions in terms of control and affiliation. The work of Safran and Muran (1996 2000) has resulted in guidelines for identifying potential ruptures in the therapeutic alliance. Elliott, Watson, Goldman, and Greenberg (2004) provide guidance in recognizing in-session markers that can serve as cues to intervene in a specific therapeutically optimal manner. In addition to determining important therapeutic occurrences, process researchers also attempt to address therapeutic interventions that will facilitate the process of change at these markers. Therefore, many of the findings of process research provide empirically supported guidelines for therapeutic tasks to be employed at important points in treatment, such as when a client...

Settling in Pondicherry

Sri Aurobindo expected initially to stay in Pondicherry for only a few months, or at most a year, to have time for his yoga meditation and inner growth, before reentering active political life. He was not inclined to meet anyone and did not want visitors to disturb his solitude. He was living on the upper floor of a rented house and would come down only to take his bath. A few youngsters who joined him from Kolkata were looking after the household. Those early years of his stay in Pondicherry were difficult times. There was a perennial financial crisis British spies kept a tab on all his visitors and activities. There was a warrant against him and there was apprehension that the French Government might deport him. Sri Aurobindo himself remained, however, completely unruffled, fully immersed in his meditation.


Heart disease is replete with abbreviations understood only by the initiated. Accordingly, when abbreviations find their way into the text, they will first be defined for the reader's enlightenment, but full terms will then be used. New terms are not used when old terms suffice, which is usually the case. Acronyms, which are generally self-serving, are avoided. Importantly, the Third World Congress of Pediatric Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery in Toronto hosted an International Summit on Nomenclature for Congenital Heart Disease that may help us all.

Useful Products

Boost during the heyday of romanticism, and was exemplified by such outstanding (but morally flawed) creators as Lord Byron and Richard Wagner. In related, more recent psychological discussions, creativity has frequently been looked at in an extremely individualistic way, and has been regarded as closely connected with self-actualization. Not infrequently, this self-actualization has been seen as requiring a fight against the surrounding society or 'defying the crowd.' Contrasting with this emphasis on the individual, however, is the idea that creativity should be useful to the society. In seventeenth century Europe, Francis Bacon and Rene Descartes, two leaders of the enlightenment, wrote that the main purpose of scientific creativity was to serve the common good. Robert Sternberg argued that creative products must be guided by wisdom and that wisdom necessarily involves striving for the common good. This raises the question of whether something destructive or evil can be regarded as...

Meditation for Everyday Living

Meditation for Everyday Living

Always wondered what meditation is all about but didn't knew who to ask? Here are some great information which will answer all of you questions on meditation. Do you want to improve your life? Are there areas of your life that just aren’t quite right? I felt the same way a few years ago. Although I had a good job and a nice family, there were parts of my life that definitely needed improvement.

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